If you recognize Irene Giman, CFA, CFP®, it’s not just because she is a Senior Financial Planner with RTD Financial and has an extensive background in Finance — including an MBA from The Wharton School in Finance, it’s also because Irene serves on Impact100 of South Jersey’s Leadership Council.
A Charter Member of the chapter, Irene’s first experience with Impact100 was with one of our neighboring chapters, Impact100 of Philadelphia. Shortly before Impact100 of South Jersey was formed, a friend took Irene to Impact100 Philadelphia’s annual meeting to experience the group. She thought it was amazing and she loved the energy.
Ready to join the Philadelphia chapter, she heard that South Jersey was forming their own group and thought it would be good to get involved in her backyard with her own community, so she attended an informational meeting and joined — she is member #13.
Lucky for Impact100 South Jersey, #13 stepped up to the plate in many ways over the last several years.
She served on the Grant Finance review her first year, as well as Grant Review committees.
The following year, she was a Focus Area Chair with Kim Moon. The year after, she became Grant Review Chair and joined the Leadership Council.
Irene says one of the great benefits of being a part of this group is that she loves working with smart, committed, passionate women. The women’s collective giving model speaks to her heart. Being part of a group of women with diverse economic backgrounds making a positive impact for our grantees warms her heart.
“Our membership increased during this pandemic year; we went from 186 members to 200 members – which meant $200,000 that we could award — wow that’s pretty cool.”
In 2021, Impact100 of South Jersey was able to award 3 grants. One $100,000 grant and two $50,000 grants.
As for the pandemic, Irene speaks proudly of the way Leadership was able to pivot mid grant season by using video conferencing for meetings and site visits to get the job done.
She enthusiastically recalls the many ways to get involved. “We need to have members who bring members in so we have the funds. We need to have members who talk to the non-profits to bring in the grant applications. We need to have members review all that so we can award the money.” She believes strongly that every aspect of Impact100 is needed, from communications, which is how the word gets out, to events that entice new members and allow members to get to know each other.
What is Irene’s legacy, with passion in her voice, she smiles and says, “I really want people to know this is what I did here.” Irene has been busy implementing policies, procedures and processes for today and the future so that down the road leaders who take over have a guide.
On a personal note, as Impact100 pivoted during COVID, so did Irene’s personal life. Her social calendar consisted of museums, shows and eating out a lot. Suddenly she couldn’t do any of it because of quarantine. So, she got in touch with nature and started hiking, kayaking and camping. She even encountered more than one bear!!
Disclaimer…no humans were injured during either bear contact, and Irene and her friends are fine. Fortunately, the bears walked away and didn’t return. Irene, however, will be returning to both Impact100 and the outdoors.